Looking Back on 2015
I used this website to generate a collage of my nine most liked posts on Instagram.
I thought that would be a good spring board for my end-of-year blog post. (There is certainly more to my life than what I post on Instagram, but it's a helpful tool. )
That rose appeared three times in the collage! Wow. People like Roses. I drew that because of the Portland Rose Festival that occurs at the beginning of June.
My favorite moment regarding that card happened when I was working at Artistic Portland one day. A lady came in and walked straight up to my Rose cards. I told her that was my design. She said she had been in the shop the night before for First Thursday and had seen the card. She had to come back and buy it and use it to write an encouraging note to her friend who was battling cancer. I was so touched that my Rose spoke to her in that way--that she wanted to pass it along.
This one holds a special place in my heart because it's where I lived the vast majority of my life and contains a large amount of people I love within it.
I had a lot of fun drawing and painting it, and probably would not have created it if my good friend Linh hadn't commissioned me to do so. That's what's so fun about commissions--they stretch me to create something I wouldn't have otherwise and they usually end up being my favorite pieces.
For instance, manatees were not even on my radar until I was asked to create this piece.
The original has the words about friendship (as you can see in the collage image), but prints are available sans the words. I think that makes the original extra special and specific--it was commissioned by someone to give to her best friend (they both loved manatees).
A quick word about commissions. They always initially terrify me. Someone pays me money to create something for them and they haven't even seen it yet. They just trust me. What if I make something they don't like? I always have to start commissions with a pep talk to myself. The person has seen my work and they like what they see. So I just need to trust myself to create in the same way I create non-commission pieces. They are paying me to be myself, so I just need to do that. Just felt like expressing that. Trust yourself!
The shark and the mermaid were random drawings I wanted to do on my own. i had a lot of fun with both of them. And hey, they are both nautical.
Finally, the non-drawing photos in that collage come from two of my favorite places in the world. Cape Perpetua on the Oregon Coast, and Mt Hood. That particular hike on Mt Hood--to the glacier caves near the summit--was so epic (and I don't just fling that word around willy-nilly). Definitely a bucket-list kind of hike. I won't re-post about it here, since I already documented it. But man, it was awesome.
There's lots more I can say--about 2015 in general, and even about last week--but I'll stop here. I'm not a fan of super long blog posts, and I assume you aren't either.
So... Happy New Year!
Read and Run
I put up some printable bookmarks on my Etsy shop today!
A great gift for a book lover (and I am one so I know): Print these bookmarks on white card stock, include some colored pencils and a book! Maybe also a mug and some tea (or coffee depending on the person) for the complete experience.
I don't have much else art news to report. In other news, I ran my first half marathon this past Sunday with my friend Kylie.
It was a fun experience! Yes I would do it again, but not every month. Maybe like twice a year tops... I'd been training for this since August, and it's refreshing now to just be able to exercise/run without training for anything specific.
I wanted to close this post with a funny meme, so I googled "running meme" and here's what I got for ya...
Ok I'll stop there. Man I gotta go draw. I need to be able to show you more than running memes next time.
It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas in our little home.
Wait, that last picture is not very festive.... Well, in Portland winter-time means lots of rain, and this week we got dumped on. We awoke on Monday to a leak in our basement (that picture was damage control, we wanted to rip up the carpet eventually anyway...) and Wednesday we awoke to no power in our house (thankfully we found a coffee shop close by with power--I need my morning cup!). According to The Oregonian, Monday was the wettest day in Portland history (the below picture is from the article).
(I feel like that guy is paddling his canoe with ping pong paddles? )
Wait, this blog is supposed to be about my art. Well, in the midst of all the wet craziness, I'm working on a commission peace that includes a poem and some trees.
That's all I'll say about that for now.
I also just recently finished reading Jane Eyre for the first time and loved it--so I'm illustrating some words from the book. They are from a part where Jane decides to swallow her pride and reach out to a friend, even though the friend is treating her poorly
I just love books and words. My goal this year has been to read 35 books, and I am almost there!
A place to share the process. A space to be honest about the triumphs and trials of my daily life as an artist and mama. Writing motivates and refreshes me.